Public Attitudes to Overseas Giving: Does Government Make a Difference?

Atkinson, Richard and Eastwood, Amy (2007) Public Attitudes to Overseas Giving: Does Government Make a Difference? Southampton, UK, Southampton Statistical Sciences Research Institute, 72pp. (S3RI Applications & Policy Working Papers, (A07/05) ).


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To what extent does the UK government influence public attitudes to overseas giving? This question is addressed with qualitative research based on focus group discussions. Knowledge of government involvement in overseas aid was found to be low. The majority of donors and non-donors to overseas causes were cynical about government messages and policies on overseas aid. There were consistent doubts about the effectiveness of development assistance. Existing attitudes towards development are reasonably ‘hardened’ or engrained. Positive influences on overseas giving – all of which seemed more influential than that of the government – included travel, the interventions of well known non-political figures, and the discovery of more direct and concrete ways of giving (e.g. ‘virtual gifts’). Future steps for government involvement in promoting overseas giving more effectively are discussed.

Item Type: Monograph (Working Paper)
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HA Statistics
Divisions: University Structure - Pre August 2011 > Southampton Statistical Sciences Research Institute
ePrint ID: 48324
Date Deposited: 11 Sep 2007
Last Modified: 28 Mar 2014 15:26
Research Funder: ESRC
Giving to Development
Funded by: ESRC (RES-155-25-0061)
Led by: John Micklewright
1 January 2006 to 31 December 2008
Publisher: Southampton Statistical Sciences Research Institute

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